Power Monkey

If you want a portable mobile charging solution and are at all ethically concerned then the solar charged Power Monkey might be the thing for you. You have to wonder though how long it would take the "sun" to charge it fully, fine I’m sure if you live in California or somewhere where the climate is wonderful but here in cold and grim Blighty it could be a different story. Still, it is an appealing gadget.

You know what it’s like. You’re away from home, you
really need to make that one call….. and your mobile phone has just
run out of battery power (again). Or maybe you’re relaxing on a
beautiful beach and your iPod has just played its final tune, or just
about to take that trip defining picture, and your camera battery has
died. The Powermonkey-eXplorer ensures that never again will this
happen to you.

Ultra compact, tough and powerful, the
Powermonkey eXplorer is always ready for your next adventure, and with
the new solar-slave, the Powermonkey-eXplorer kit lets you charge
wherever, whenever.

The Powermonkey-eXplorer will charge/power more or less any portable device, be it mobile phone, camera, iPod, MP3 players.


HTC Home screen for treo 750

Treo_750v_htc_home_sreen Spotted this over at xda-developers….a HTC Home screen that seems to work on the treo 750. I’ve been using Spb Mobile Shell myself for a while and prefer that but this one is free.

I had this on the HTC S730 I used briefly and it was quite nice if not a little memory intensive.

For those of you using WM Standard edition then there is also one for you, I’ve been using this one on my S630 and it works just fine. It really transforms the Homescreen layout. Not only does it make the Homescreen more useable but the theme extends to all aspects of the device.

is it just me or…

….does it look to you as if there is zip all difference in these purported screenshots of Win Mob 6.1 from what it is at present? The Boy Genius lists some "changes" and they hardly seem to make you likely to go storming the gates of Microsoft offering up virgins in gratitude.

"You might have remembered our detailed coverage of Windows Mobile
6.1 Standard a few months back. Our Motorola Q9 with Wi-Fi came with
it, and we’ve just received a new Motorola Q9 with Wi-Fi, and it’s got
some updated Windows Mobile 6.1 goodies in it! Here’s a quick breakdown
of the new features:

  • Support for AT&T’s Video Share
  • New thumbnail browsing
  • New Albums feature
  • Send to your space (upload to your Windows Live account)
  • Updated camera UI
  • Updated home screen (more music and multimedia features)
  • TV out

While the new added enhancements aren’t groundbreaking by any means,
it does give us a nice look at how Windows Mobile 6.1 is turning out.
Hit the gallery for the screen shots!"

HTC S630 and more Revo stuff

Curiousity got the better of me and after a couple of minorish ebay sales I had enough, sort of, to get another smartphone that I probably (inevitably) won’t like as much as my treo’s or Centro. I remember Shaun at pda247 going on about his HTC Excalibur/T-mobile Dash thingy…my God, he used it for about 6 months so it must have been decent…so I had found myself drawn to the follow up model, the S630.

So, that was the one I bought this week from expansys. Now, this has to be some sort of import model or something as I’ve never read about it being officially launched in the UK and as such it comes with a euro twin pronged plug and no UK adaptor….you would have though expansys might have mentioned that in their splurb. It does not, well mine didn’t anyway, come with any sort of "regional adaptor". Luckily, if there is one thing I have plenty of it’s mini usb chargers.

I’m not sure if I like this thing enough to keep it, it has been playing up a little as apps have refused to launch at times and it tells me that files are missing too. Very strange behaviour. Another irritation is that it won’t let me switch to GSM only and just use WIFI for downloading despite there being an apparant option under the Phone settings to do so. This would be a nice way to conserve battery life but I seem to be stuck with it struggling to lock onto 3G unless I am standing directly below a 200ft reception mast, well that’s how it feels anyway. I’m not going to do a full blown review as I may end up sending it back but I would say that the keyboard is good to go, it feels well made and sits nicely in the hand. The specs are good too. It’s pretty thin and feels and in fact is smaller all round than the Moto Q9 I had a few months ago.

See, another gadget that I had the hots for and have ended up, admittedly it is early doors, feeling a bit disappointed by it. You would think I’d have learned my lesson by now but oh no…mind you, a dramatic turnaround could take place and this time next week it could be the greatest thing since my Centro.

To Adrian…yes, I feel comfortable about using the Revo in front of clients as I don’t think it is a nerdy looking device and perhaps just as importantly, I can actually type on it quickly in those meetings so I don’t end up looking stupid in front of people…well, no more than usual anyway. In the past, I have tried to use a treo and a TX in meetings but had to give up as I couldn’t type quickly enough on them to make any sense of my notes post-meeting. The Revo just feels like a mini laptop. Hope that answers your question.

I ended up buying a serial cable off ebay for the Ericsson MC218 as that will enable me to connect it to my work laptop and hopefully do the same sort of syncing and file exchanging that I can do with the Revo Plus. I can’t decide whether I like the Revo Plus or MC218 better as each has their plus points…the MC218 has a useful backlight, expandable memory and a bigger (and better?) keyboard whereas is let down, in my view, by using AA batteries and bulkier form factor. The Revo Plus is more pocketable, has a rechargeable internal battery which I prefer but no expandable memory or backlight. For on the fly typing of Word docs and at the price you can pick these up for off ebay they have to be considered both fantastic value and near unbeatable.

Vaja unveils Retro cases for iPod and iPhone | iLounge News

Link: Vaja unveils Retro cases for iPod and iPhone | iLounge News.

Some new vaja cases for the iPhone and iPod touch have been launched, these seem a bit cheaper than their normal offerings. This one looks a bit basic in comparison.

I’ve been tempted for a while to get one of the dockable flip cases with the front stripe but still can’t decide what colour combinations to go for…mainly black with a white stripe seems a bit predictable, I was thinking perhaps black with baby blue stripe?

Has anybody got one they are particularly pleased with, please no girly pink and orange combos…(no offence ladies)

Mobile things have changed…not always for the better though?

Using the Revo Plus, which came out first I think in 2001, it brings it home how things have changed so much certainly in terms of device specs since then. Firstly, there is the screen resolution. The greeny slightly grainy looking effort on the Revo really dates it as does the lack of onboard apps compared to what we are used to expect on newer devices.

You can certainly do a heck of a lot more on your fancy dan new treo’s and win mob powerhouse phones but there are certain things perhaps, you can’t do as well despite the newer technology. What I mean by that is this….the Revo has a keyboard that will kick the butts off any HTC TyTn or Eten keyboarded device and that makes it a far far better pda for using and working with Microsoft Word documents or any apps that rely predominately on text entry. It can be used two handed when sitting in my car, balanced on my knees and I can type away very easily and quicker than on many devices I’ve used in the past.

With the PsiWin software it is now easy to transfer files from the Revo to a PC and to open them in doc and excel formats, work on them again and then transfer them back. It’s the only pda that I have felt comfortable using in front of clients in meetings at work to make notes. There is an onboard email app too but I’ve not bothered to even try to get it up and running for two reasons, firstly I’m sure I wouldn’t manage to establish the required IR connection with a phone and secondly, I don’t need to use email on it anyway so why bother? Too often I find myself trying to get some silly feature up and running on a new device just for the sheer hell of it, knowing full well that I will more than likely never use it.

Yep, I’m pretty darn pleased with the Revo Plus to date, function wise and in comparison to say my treo 680 or Centro it is limited but what it can do, like the iPhone, it can do spectacularly well and that makes it very very useful. So, if I need to do some word or excel stuff I now head for the Revo.

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Bits’n’bobs in my mobile world

Revo_plus Finally managed to uninstall that pesky Ericsson software that was hanging around, uninvited, on my work PC, actually it’s not a PC, it’s never been a PC…it has always been a laptop. I used an application I found for nowt on the web, MoveonBoot, and it did the job. That enabled me to load up PsiWin, available here, and this has worked like a charm for syncing my Revo.

I have now managed to sync across all my Outlook contacts and meetings and can compose word docs on the Revo and then import them onto the laptop at work. It also lets me do backups. This is adding a whole new wave of usefulness to the Revo Plus which I much prefer to the Ericsson MC218.

Doom3evilboxboxart_160w I saw a whole heap of Apple adverts on TV over the weekend. I just find them rather irritating.for several reasons  ..it’s the combination of the annoying twee folky type wimpy background music (usually "sung" by some nasally female) and the general smugness/hippiness of the sales approach…"ooohhh woooh, aren’t we so clever?" that just really really bugs me. I also hate the Guitar Hero game commerical where that drug filled Slash from that awful Guns N’ Roses pap sort of appears from within somebody else and stands there, looking about 5 stone overweight and death warmed up, pulling some ludicrous 90’s style guitar raawwwk’n’roll poses….one spliff and one shot too many old chap.

Talking of xbox, well in a roundabout sort of way, I had a shot of Viva Pinata or whatever it is called the other night. It came "free" bundled with Forza2 Motorsport with the 360 my son got for his xmas. You know what, I thought I would find this game really annoying…..and I did!! A couple of people had said to me they’d really enjoyed it but I just couldn’t see the attraction, it was trying to be too cutesy wootsy for its own good. I’m going to go back and play Doom3 – Resurrection of Evil as I have discovered it is now playable on the 360 following the Nov 2007 updater….hoorah, a decent game to play again.